Dancer’s Review of Plains of Sand and Steel by Alisha Klapheke

I’d like to thank Rock Star book Tours for letting me participate in this amazing tour, and also thank Alisha for providing me with a copy of her book in exchange for my honest review! If you would like to see all of the blogs involved in this event, please click on the banner above. =^.^=

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Rating: 

Publisher: Alisha Klapheke

Release Date: May 25, 2017

Series: Uncommon World #2

Goodreads Description:

Forced into marriage.

Chosen by Fire.

Determined to do what is right.

Seren will do anything to protect her people. Even if it means hiding the body of their dead ruler and telling a lie that could lead her to a brutal end.

As she struggles to accept her role as leader and fails to resist a mercenary she isn’t allowed to love, an army falls on her city. Seren fights to protect her friends—the only family she has left—but her newfound power turns a possible victory in to a storm of chaos.

Review:

If you haven’t yet tried Klapheke’s novels, what are you waiting for? If you enjoy fantasy, magic, suspense, danger, political intrigue, and more, you’ll love this book. And before I go fully into my review, let me assure you that just because this claims to be the second book in Klapheke’s Uncommon World series, it doesn’t mean you can’t read it as a stand-alone. This book features a different set of characters from the previous books in the series, though you do meet Seren in Fever, the short novella that proceeds this. But even then, you don’t need to read Fever to read this one. But if I’m to be honest, don’t be surprised if you immediately go and get the rest of the series when you’re done because yes, it is that good, and yes, you’ll want to read the rest at some point!  That being said, let’s get on with the review, shall we?

I greatly enjoyed this book. Once I started reading, I didn’t want to put it down. With every chapter I found myself on the edge of my seat anxious to find out what would happen next. There is no question that Klapheke is skilled at drawing a reader into her stories and keeping them hooked until the very end. The world that she’s created is amazing, and it easily lends itself to many opportunities for more books in the future, which is great because I am greatly looking forward to seeing what she’s got planned next.

Now as much as I miss not seeing a return of Calev and Kinneret from the previous books, I enjoyed reading about Seren and her fight to become kyros. Admittedly I wasn’t originally impressed with her and thought that she was a bit too weak-willed in the beginning, but as the story progressed she grew tougher and learned to play the leader while still maintaining her caring nature. She’s intelligent, adamant about protecting those she loves, compassionate to a fault at times, and fierce when she needs to be. I wanted her to succeed, and by the end I was cheering when she proved her strength to those who opposed her.

But this isn’t just Seren’s story, though it is primarily about her, it is also Ona’s (Onaratta) in many ways. Ona’s a character who I initially loved, mostly because she was a kick butt and ask questions later kind of girl. She’s fierce, skilled in the arts of war, driven to avenge her aunt’s death, and not one who easily takes no for an answer. The problem is, those same attributes of hers began to grow on my nerves, and eventually I grew frustrated over her not seeing Seren’s side of things. Ona is yin to Seren’s yang. They both suffered hardships at the hands of the Invaders, and both want to avenge those they lost. And each has something to teach the other. The problem that comes up though is Ona is too stubborn to see beyond her need for revenge and this causes problems. In the end, I wanted to know what would happen next with her and see where she was headed in her life, even if I was a bit less enamored with her than at the start. I can only hope that we’ll get to see more of her in the next book, and that she eventually finds her way to the peace she so deserves.

What honestly impressed me was how into the book I got. As I said, once I started I quickly found myself immersed in the story and unwilling to leave except for only the most immediate of needs. I easily could see this book being made into a TV show as it has all the themes and plot points that would make for an amazing live action series, and it isn’t often that I feel this way about a book I read. Usually I prefer that stories I enjoy be left to the printed page rather than carried over to a different form of media, but I could see myself being happy if that happened with this. Between the vividly describe lands, the caste system, the inclusion of magic, and even the bits of romance (which were there, but this is by no means a romance novel), the story has everything to lend itself to amazing TV. Seriously, if any Hollywood producer is looking for a new project to take on, consider this series, please!

So, am I fan of this book? Most definitely. Would I recommend it to others? Do cat’s rules and dogs drool? Snag a copy of this book for yourself and enjoy! Believe me, you won’t be disappointed. =^.^=

About the Author:

Award-winning author Alisha Klapheke wants to infuse your life with unique magic, far-flung fantasy settings, and romance. Her inspiration springs from medieval art and artifacts, the world travel she enjoys with her husband, and the fantasy she grew up reading when she was supposed to be doing her math homework.

When she’s not writing, Alisha teaches Thai kickboxing, Brazilian jiu jitsu, and krav maga at her family’s dojo just outside of Nashville. That may be why writing fight scenes is her favorite.

Kathleen Rushall of Andrea Brown Literary Agency represents Alisha in all things books.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

***Giveaway***

If you would like to enter for your chance to win signed paperbacks of WATERS OF SALT & SIN, FEVER, and PLAINS OF SAND & STEEL & Swag (Stickers & A Signed Map), AND Paperbacks of AIR AWAKENS by Elise Kova & FIRST YEAR by Rachel E. Carter (US Only), or 1 of 3 eBooks of WATERS OF SALT AND SIN, FEVER, and PLAINS OF SAND AND STEEL (International), please click on the Rafflecopter link below:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba2591

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Posted on June 12, 2017, in Book Reviews. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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